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positive foot ramp

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi guys,


First of all thanks a lot for being there.
Second: I have read the FAQs but still have a question smile.gif

Third: this is my first post so please be gentle!


So here is the deal: my Achille's heels (and my calves) are a bit short/tight (so are my Dad's). I do some stretching but it doesnt fully compensate. So it's hard for me to bend the ankle as much as some others do (my heels go up when i bend the knees).

You can see where i'm getting: it's hard for me to press on the chins while pressing on the heels...


So far I've always rented boots, and last year i dealt with the issue by placing some toe warmers under my heels (with the combined effects of keeping me warm and making my heel higher, thus giving me more control and less fatigue).

RIght now i'm thinking i should get boots. And after reading all your stuff I realize two things:

1. my shoes have always been too big (otherwise the extra 0.8cm of the toe warmer would have been too uncomfortable)

2. i should also get a foot bed


Now here is the question.

Can a footbed address my heel problem (looks to thin to do so)? If not can i stick to my 'system'? With or without footbed as well? If not what's the best solution?

(i saw that some Atomic shoes have a 16° positive ramp, but ive never tried them on so i dont know whether their shape would fit my foot).


Thanks in advance,



PS: I am 34, 6'0, 80kgs, early intermediate skier aiming at quickly becoming better (only started skiing seriously last year but totally loved it)

post #2 of 12

When you say Atomic shoes I assume you mean Atomic boots but if they have 16 degree ramp then it means Atomic is now making ladies heels.  I measure boots regularly and have never found one over 8 degrees and I'd say that for most skiers that is way to high.


If your goal is specifically to raise your heels then a footbed will only help if the maker adds a heel lift to it.  Typical footbeds made at shops are uniform thickness throughout.


It does sound as if you are tight and it is possible that the heel lift will help, however it often puts skiers in the back seat and it may be best to have your fitter incorporate a heel lift internally and a toe lift externally



post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

Dear Lou,


Thanks a lot for your prompt answer. Yes I did mean "boot" rather than shoe (sorry, English is not my first language).

As for the Atomic ramp, here is what i found on their website for the M90:


I assumed that meant a 16° ramp?


Anyways, your feedback is already very valuable (didn't know about heel lifts / and what would be the toe lift for?).

The risk of getting into the backseat is indeed real as I'm still not a good skier.



post #4 of 12

No problem and not at all the same thing.  Forward lean is the angle of the upper cuff forward from vertical.  Ramp angle is the inclination of your foot in the boot and the heel is higher than the toe.



post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

okay... i got confused by the drawing that showed you could adjust the ramp... sorry for my bad command of english :) and i'll look into heel lifts!

post #6 of 12

Good luck and don't forget you may need an external toe lift to go with it.

post #7 of 12

As Lou suggested I would start with the heel lift and in addition remove any shim at the top of the rear spoiler or attached to the back of your inner boot to allow a more upright angle which again helps to open the ankle.  The size of the heel lift needed can be assessed by a competent boot fitter or CPed dependent on your ankle's range of motion.  The idea here is to open the ankle to allow better range of motion and to bring the earth up to meet your heel (fill the void).

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 

thank you both!

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hello again,


I have been thinking about this, and have an additional question now.
Context: I plan to purchase the shoe from a retailer based in Paris (France), where they have a huge choice of boots, but the bootfitters are extremely busy and seem to range from the very good to the very bad (I have no assurance that i'll be serviced by one of the good ones). That's why I try to gather as much qualified info as i can before going there. 


I intend to buy the shoe that will fit me best, following the choice criteria described here in the FAQ.

As for the footbed, the shop i'm going to sells and customizes those made by the French leader ( Apparently using the equipment properly should not be a problem ( 


My question now is twofold:

1. what do you exactly call a "heel lift"? is it some kind of custom made support? or can it be something simple like this ( or that (, combining the slight uplift with a better cushioning?

2. if the answer to the above is "just an off the shelf gel pad", should i buy it before i have the footbeds custom made? should i even step onto the measuring equipment with that cushion under my heel, so that the footbed takes the right shape from the beginning?


Thanks again, hope it makes sense.


post #10 of 12

I believe there is a Wiki attached to this forum with information on all the fitters here.  One of us is located in Chamonix, perhaps that is less risky for you.  The Sidas image you've attached is the correct shape but I'm not familiar with the product and don't know it's firmness.  Often manufacturers pads are fairly soft and personally we use a fairly dense foam called nickelplast.



post #11 of 12



as Lou says heel lifts work best when they lift the heel rather than lift it a little and cushion it, not a lot of point putting 6mm of compressible material inside the boot when you want 6mm of lift, most fitters who lift the heel for the right reasons lift it with firm materials , if you need a cushio then fine but if it is a lift make it firm


you can get to chamonix pretty easily form paris or even to here in the UK but i would tend toward sa fitter who works with  biomechanics and boots 


the sides products you mention are fine if made properly, however if not made well then they are as bad as any other badly made insert


going right back to your original post it sounds as though you need an upright boot to reduce the tension on your calf muscle, a heel lift to address this shortness, and if the calf muscle is big a store that can modify the back of the boot cuff backward away from your calf muscle


ankle joint dorsiflexion and range of motion is a very important part of skiing, and it is astonishing how many boot fitters do not understand it's importance 

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 

thank you!

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